Carotid artery blockages are caused by hardening of the arteries, called atherosclerosis. Risk factors for atherosclerosis include:
Strokes occur when pieces of the diseased artery break off and travel into the brain, eventually blocking blood flow, causing part of the brain to die. This can either cause a full-blown stroke, resulting in permanent neurological problems in a minority of people, or a transient ischemic attack (TIA), which produces the same symptoms as a stroke but resolves in less than a day, often in a matter of minutes.
Symptoms of both stroke and a transient ischemic attack (TIA) include:
Along with atherosclerosis, there are other less common conditions that also can affect the carotid arteries, including:
Reviewed by health care specialists at UCSF Medical Center.
Interventional Radiology Clinic
505 Parnassus Ave., Room M-361
San Francisco, CA 94143
Phone: (415) 353-1300
Appointments: (415) 353-2573
Billing: 415) 514-8888
Fax: (415) 353-8570